Column: La Mirada’s Shaun Grayson keeps growing as a tight end
It’s a moment in time that fathers and sons never forget. It happened in the summer of 2019 for the Grayson family.
The father, Shaun, 6 feet 2 and 250 pounds, played football for Long Beach Poly. Now his son, Shaun II, a tight end at La Mirada, passed him in height.
“It came so abruptly,” Shaun Sr. said. “He was always, ‘Dad, I’m going to get bigger than you.’ Well, wait until that day. When the day came, it was like one day he fell asleep shorter than me and the next day woke up taller than me. Conversations are different. He looks down on me.”
Shaun II has grown to 6-5, 235 pounds and gone from size 11 1/2 shoes to size 13. He’s a senior and just turned 17 in November.
“I feel for sure I’m going to grow a lot more,” he said.
La Mirada High School’s standout tight end talks about prepping for a spring season of football
The delay in the football season because of the COVID-19 pandemic was a boon for Grayson. He had more months to keep growing while getting stronger and faster. The opportunity to show his improvement began Friday when La Mirada opened its five-game schedule in a loss to Orange. He had two catches for 12 yards and three tackles on defense. He has signed with UNLV and decorated his room with a red neon light.
“I see it as a big opportunity,” he said of the delayed season. “We’re all having time taken away from us. I’m going to take this the right way no matter what pandemic we have going on. I was always taught to battle through adversity and find a way.”
Coach Mike Moschetti said Grayson is built physically “like a Greek god.”
“Last year was his first year playing tight end, and he got better and better each week,” Moschetti said. “His best football is in front of him.”
Said Grayson: “It took some time to learn tight end. It was very new to me. I took under the wing of my coach and listened in.”
Grayson said the summer of 2019 was “a turning point.”
“I started going to workouts after workouts. I started grinding,” he said.
He played on the freshman team at defensive end, then junior varsity as a sophomore until a leg injury ended his season. His huge hands make him ideal to catch passes, and he has been learning how to make an impact as a blocker, a critical requirement for La Mirada, which runs the ball a lot.
“I had to work on my foot placement and turning my hips more,” he said. “I can add on top of what I learned last year.”
He spent lots of time with his father this summer when the state’s stay-at-home orders were in place.
“I’m shoving him full of protein,” his father said. “Working out with weights four to five days.”
Son still isn’t ready to claim superiority over father despite passing him in height.
“My dad is the only man I fear on this whole Earth,” he said. “I’m still scared.”
But it certainly was fun enjoying that moment of the changing of the guard.
“The first thing I did, I kind of walked past him. Wait a minute, something isn’t right. Wait, Dad, I’m taller than you. ‘No, you’re not.’ Yes, I am. ‘Well, it doesn’t matter. I’ll still beat you up.’ For sure that was a proud moment.”
TIGHT ENDS TO WATCH THIS SEASON
Keyan Burnett, Servite, 6-5, 200, Jr. USC commit moves like a running back
Scott Giuliano, Corona del Mar, 6-5, 230, Sr. Harvard signee a top blocker
Shaun Grayson, La Mirada, 6-5, 235, Sr. UNLV signee is growing up fast
Bentley Redden, San Clemente, 6-5, 205, Sr. BYU signee has 4.33 GPA
Matayo Uiagalelei, St. John Bosco, 6-4, 245, So. Already showing great hands
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